The opening ceremony was held today at 14.00 p.m. in Cherkasy specialized school # 3 of І-ІІІ degrees. Yevhen was a student of this school. The event began with the national anthem and a minute of silence in honour of those defenders of Ukraine who perished in Eastern Ukraine.
Yevhen’s wife and his parents, deputy head of town Ihor Kolomoiets, director of the education and humanitarian policy department Maryna Baklanova, the representatives of regional military commissariat, clergy of Ukrainian Orthodox Church of Kyiv Patriarchy, educatees of “Plast”, the school’s pupils and comrade-in-arms came to honour the hero.
– We have come here today to honour the cherished memory of Captain Yevhenii Podolianchuk. I knew Zheniia when he was Lieutenant, then Senior Lieutenant. He was an extraordinary man. Why extraordinary? He was a leader, who drew in his subordinates and not only them. He proved himself as a teacher. In what way? He personally trained his personnel. His group was among the best. He was a sports tourism instructor. He did many more things. But above all– he was an officer, a true officer, and thus a patriot. I would like the younger generation to understand that people did not come here today, two years after his death, merely to say good words. I think it is symbolic that the memorial plaque with Zhenia’s photo will be at the entrance to his school. Because he was a man whose example should be followed. He never drank alcoholic drinks, never smoked and even through such acts displayed his strength. People saw and understood that it is possible to live this way. He was an example, and this was not an attempt to follow the fashion or an attempt to stand out of the crowd. Zhenia was a role model and it came so uncoerced and naturally to him. It was an honour to serve with Podolianchuk for me, for those who are present here and for those who were in the same battle with him, - said Yevhen’s sworn brother Major Petro Herasymiak during the unveiling of the plaque.
The wife of the fallen hero Mariia also thanked family members, friends and teachers for their support.
– Often, the pain of loss makes me wish for oblivion, to remember only the bright moments. And I thank all friends who are by my side, who keep the memory of Zhenia alive; not only the happy moments, but the difficult times for me and our family as well. After all, you know that Zhenia was a role model. It would be incorrect for me to praise him, but he was really “without faults”. This is how he lived his life and how he will live on in our memories, – Mariia said.
His class-teacher Iryna Kucherenko remembers her student as an active, cheerful and responsible young man.
– You know, I’ve been thinking about Zhenia very often for the last two years. I’ve told my colleagues, friends, acquaintances, pupils about him. I often type “Podolianchuk Yevhen” in a browser and read articles about him. One day, I came across photographs of hand-written instructions. They were written in block letters, the same way he wrote in school, and they were posted on the walls of Donetsk airport. These were instruction on safety precautions in emergency situation. They demonstrated the care he had for his subordinates. At that moment, I acknowledged that you did not have to be acquainted with Zhenia to understand, through these placards, what sort of man he was. His whole essence was in these placards: responsibility, precision, rationality, attention to every detail, – the teacher says.
She says that even at school Yevhen was always on the look-out, in motion, with big plans and time to do everything. – Now, I think that he probably felt, somewhere on the subconscious level, that he had limited time. Because in that short period of his life he fit in as much as possible, – his class-teacher adds.
Representatives of clergy offered prayers in the name of the perished warrior and blessed the memorial plaque.
It bears reminding that, Yevhen Podolianchuk was commander of a special forces group of the 3rd separate special forces regiment in Kirovohrad. He was among the first who departed to the ATO area at the beginning of combat actions. He was killed on September 14, 2014 at the age of 23 during the defence of Donetsk airport.